As many of you know, we are dependent on our planes and pilots for transpartation in and out of Menya as well as the delivery of our supplies. We are also dependent on our mile-long airstrip, which is problematic.
The tractor that is supposed to cut the grass on our airstip has been broken down for two years now. Everytime we ask about it, we’re told by government officials that the parts have been ordered. But since the grass doesn’t get cut on a regular schedule, our airstrip gets closed on a regular basis. When pilots fly in and deem the grass too long, they shut it down until we report that the it has been cut. Over the last two years there have been numerous times when we have had to spur on our local leaders to get the grass cut and a few times we’ve taken matters into our own hands when a little spot-mowing was sufficient.
In September we got permission to appoint a group of guys from our village to cut the full length of the strip with machetes–25 guys, four days of cutting. That lasted until October 28th when it was closed again. At that time, the guys hadn’t yet been paid for the September cutting, which means frost was a bigger threat to the grass than their machetes. We started praying that our government official would come through with the wages. On Saturday, he called me to say he had the money which I could come get and distribute. Praise the Lord.
So we are hoping to get our guys to cut the grass agian this week in preperation for three flights we have scheduled over the following two weeks. Please pray with us that 1. the work gets done in time and 2. the tractor actually gets fixed and we don’t have to spend so much time on airstrip maintenance.